February 17, 2011

Employment by Industry as % of total from 1961 to 2010

The BLS has total employment figures by general industry.   See the Employees on nonfarm payrolls by major industry sector, 1961 to date

Looking at the employment by industry as a % of total this is how it looked graphically:


One thing that sticks out is the gradual downward trend in the manufacturing jobs as a % of the whole.  If we look at the percent of total jobs that each industry has you can see that there were some major shifts in the 50 year period.



1961 2010 Change
Total Private 83.9% 82.7% -1.2%
Total goods producing 34.5% 13.7% -20.8%
Mining and Logging 1.3% 0.5% -0.8%
Construction 5.4% 4.3% -1.1%
Manufacturing 27.7% 8.9% -18.9%
Total Service producing 65.5% 86.3% 20.8%
Trade, Transportation, and utilities 20.4% 19.0% -1.5%
Information 3.1% 2.1% -1.0%
Financial Services 4.8% 5.9% 1.1%
Professional and business services 6.9% 12.9% 5.9%
Education and health services 5.6% 15.1% 9.5%
Leisure and hospitality 6.4% 10.0% 3.6%
Other Services 2.2% 4.1% 1.9%
Government 16.1% 17.3% 1.2%

As you can see there was a significant shift of about 20% from goods producing jobs to service jobs.   The single biggest loser was the manufacturing industry which dropped 18.9%.  In 1961 over 1/4 of our jobs were in manufacturing but by 2010 that had dropped to under 9%.  Manufacturing jobs peaked at 19.4M in 1979 and had dropped to 11.5M in 2010.   Education and health was the biggest gainer in jobs as % of the total with an increase of 9.5% from 5.6% to 15.1%
Note that some of those categories are sub-totals not individual industries. Here's how the sub totals and industries add up: 

Total private + government = total
Total goods + total service = total

Total goods = mining & logging + manufacturing + construction
Total services = trade,transport, utility + information + financial + professional, business + education, health + leisure & hospitality + other services + government

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